Thursday, September 9, 2010

Great American Road Trip, Part VII: Devil's Tower

August 5th was a busy day for us! We traveled through the Black Hills, and then decided we should eat our lunch at the geographical center of the 50 United States of America in Belle Fourche, SD.
The actual pinpointed center of the 50 states is twenty miles north of this spot, but I believe it is on private property, so they put the marker here in town where people could come stand on it and have their picture taken. It was a nice enough park, with flags for all the 50 states, and tags on the flag poles noting how far away each state capital is from that spot.

We continued westward, into Wyoming! Yay, a new state for me!


My word, what an impressive state. So different than anywhere I've ever lived. So different than anywhere else I've ever even visited!




Wide open skies, wide open spaces. It's funny how the terrain had changed so gradually, yet so dramatically, since we'd left home, a steady progression from forested to prairie to desert to foothills. Each state has it's own unique beauty.
Devil's Tower:
















All that rolling terrain, then suddenly that formation rising up out of the ground. I understand why people would worship here.


We drove up the parking lot, then walked all around the base.









Views of the surrounding area were fabulous.
















There were many groups of rock climbers out that day. Even when you are standing so close to the tower and appreciating how enormous it is, seeing how tiny those climbers are gives you a better sense of the scale of the tower.













More sweeping views:










There is a prairie dog town on the flat land near the monument, right near the road. We only have prairie dogs in zoos where we live.






















































They pop in and out of their holes, chirp at each other, chase each other, and race around with lightning speed. I know they are an incredible nuisance on ranches, but we were amused by them nonetheless.































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